Greene Ford Compares 2017 Ford Mustang VS 2017 Fiat 124 Near Buford, GA

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2017 Ford Mustang

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VS

2017 Fiat 124

Safety Comparison

The Mustang Premium offers an optional collision warning system, which detects an impending crash through forward mounted sensors and flashes a bright light and sounds a loud, distinctive tone to warn the driver to brake or maneuver immediately to avoid a collision. The 124 Spider doesn't offer a collision warning system.

Compared to metal, the Mustang’s plastic fuel tank can withstand harder, more intrusive impacts without leaking; this decreases the possibility of fire. The Fiat 124 Spider has a metal gas tank.

The Mustang has standard 911 Assist, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to get turn-by-turn driving directions or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.

Both the Mustang and the 124 Spider have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, available blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

The Ford Mustang weighs 1097 to 1468 pounds more than the Fiat 124 Spider. The NHTSA advises that heavier cars are much safer in collisions than their significantly lighter counterparts. Lighter cars are also affected more by crosswinds.

Warranty Comparison

Ford’s powertrain warranty covers the Mustang 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Fiat covers the 124 Spider. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the 124 Spider ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 23 times as many Ford dealers as there are Fiat dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Mustang’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

The camshafts in the Mustang’s engine are driven by a hardened steel chain, with no maintenance needs. The 124 Spider’s camshaft is driven by a rubber belt that needs periodic replacement. If the 124 Spider’s cam drive belt breaks the engine could be severely damaged when the pistons hit the opened valves.

The Mustang has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the car’s engine.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2016 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Fiat vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 11th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 72 more problems per 100 vehicles, Fiat is ranked 31st, below the industry average.

Engine Comparison

The Mustang has more powerful engines than the 124 Spider:

 

Horsepower

Torque

Mustang 3.7 DOHC V6

300 HP

280 lbs.-ft.

Mustang ECOBoost 2.3 turbo 4 cyl.

310 HP

320 lbs.-ft.

Mustang GT 5.0 DOHC V8

435 HP

400 lbs.-ft.

124 Spider 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

160 HP

184 lbs.-ft.

124 Spider Abarth 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

165 HP

184 lbs.-ft.

As tested in Car and Driver the Ford Mustang is faster than the 124 Spider Abarth (manual transmissions tested):

 

Mustang ECOBoost

Mustang GT

124 Spider

Zero to 60 MPH

5.5 sec

4.4 sec

6.7 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

13.3 sec

10.5 sec

18.8 sec

Quarter Mile

13.9 sec

13 sec

15.1 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

102 MPH

112 MPH

91 MPH

Top Speed

148 MPH

164 MPH

136 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The Mustang ECOBoost’s standard fuel tank has 3.6 gallons more fuel capacity than the 124 Spider (15.5 vs. 11.9 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Mustang V6/GT’s standard fuel tank has 4.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the 124 Spider (16 vs. 11.9 gallons).

The Mustang has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Mustang’s brake rotors are larger than those on the 124 Spider:

 

Mustang

Mustang GT

124 Spider

Front Rotors

12.5 inches

15 inches

11 inches

Rear Rotors

12.5 inches

13 inches

11 inches

The Mustang’s optional front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the 124 Spider are solid, not vented.

The Mustang stops much shorter than the 124 Spider:

 

Mustang

124 Spider

 

70 to 0 MPH

149 feet

171 feet

Car and Driver

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Mustang has larger standard tires than the 124 Spider (235/55R17 vs. 195/50R16). The Mustang’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the 124 Spider (265/35R20 vs. 205/45R17).

The Mustang’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 35 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the 124 Spider Lusso’s 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Mustang has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the 124 Spider Classico. The Mustang’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 17-inch wheels on the 124 Spider Lusso.

The Ford Mustang’s wheels have 5 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Fiat 124 Spider only has 4 wheel lugs per wheel.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Mustang has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.

The Mustang’s drift compensation steering can automatically compensate for road conditions which would cause the vehicle to drift from side to side, helping the driver to keep the vehicle straight more easily. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer drift compensation steering.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Mustang’s wheelbase is 16.2 inches longer than on the 124 Spider (107.1 inches vs. 90.9 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Mustang is 3.5 inches wider in the front and 6 inches wider in the rear than on the 124 Spider.

Chassis Comparison

For excellent aerodynamics, the Mustang has standard flush composite headlights. The 124 Spider has recessed headlights that spoil its aerodynamic shape and create extra drag.

The Mustang ECOBoost uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Mustang has standard seating for 4 passengers; the 124 Spider can only carry 2.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Mustang Convertible has a much larger trunk with its top down than the 124 Spider (11.4 vs. 4.9 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

The Mustang Auto has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

To help each driver find a more comfortable driving position, the Mustang has a telescoping steering wheel. Much better than just a tilt steering wheel or adjustable seat, this allows a short driver to sit further from the steering wheel while maintaining contact with the pedals. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a telescoping steering wheel.

When three different drivers share the Mustang Premium, the optional memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Mustang Premium’s optional easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Mustang’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge – which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The 124 Spider does not have an oil pressure gauge.

The Mustang’s front power windows open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The 124 Spider’s power windows’ switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.

The Mustang’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The 124 Spider Classico’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Mustang has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. When the ignition turns off, the headlights turn off after a delay timed to allow you to securely get to your front door. The 124 Spider has an automatic headlight on/off feature standard only on the Lusso.

To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Mustang has standard extendable sun visors. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer extendable visors.

The Mustang’s sun-visors swivel front-to-side to block glare from the side windows. The 124 Spider’s visors are fixed into the windshield header.

Standard air conditioned seats in the Mustang Premium keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer air conditioned seats.

The Mustang Premium’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.

A built-in pollen filter removes pollen, exhaust fumes and other pollutants from the Mustang’s passenger compartment. This helps prevent lung and/or sinus irritation, which can trigger allergies or asthma. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer a filtration system.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Mustang Premium offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Contr4ol, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The 124 Spider doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

Recommendations Comparison

IntelliChoice recognized the Ford Mustang as a “Best Value of the Year” for the 2015 model year.

The Mustang was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 6 of the last 12 years. The 124 Spider has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.

The Mustang was chosen as one of Automobile Magazine’s “All Stars” for 3 of the last 21 years. The 124 Spider has never been an “All Star.”

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